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812, 2022

Must We Really Deport All of Our Undocumented?  The U.S. Supreme Court Is About to Weigh In

By |December 8th, 2022|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published December 6, 2022 Homeowners are a lot like governments.  Both must give attention to the imperfections before them.  In a house it might be broken windows, chipped paint, or even termites.   In a government, it might involve a nation facing excessive corruption, broken highways, or even broken borders.  Time and money, among other factors, will typically limit a homeowner or government’s ability to fix every problem it faces.  Thus the [...]

2411, 2022

Immigration Lawyers Association Honors Richard Hanus with the Beacon of Light Award

By |November 24th, 2022|Categories: Uncategorized|

The Law Offices of Richard Hanus is proud to announce that the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) Chicago Chapter honored Richard Hanus, on June 14, 2022, by presenting him with the “Minsky Beacon of Light Award.” The Beacon of Light Award is presented annually to an attorney who stands out in their dedication to the advancement of the field of immigration law and as an outstanding mentor to fellow immigration [...]

1411, 2022

When the Worlds of Marijuana, State Law and U.S. Immigration Meet: Yes Means No

By |November 14th, 2022|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, General, Green Cards, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published November 14, 2022 Mixed signals.  This is the best way to describe our society’s stance when it comes to marijuana use and U.S. immigration law.  Our state laws send one message, such as in Illinois where marijuana use and distribution is now legal.   Our federal laws though send a completely opposite message, prohibiting these very same activities. When it comes to applying for a Green Card or U.S. citizenship [...]

611, 2022

Common Immigration Issues: 5 Times You Need an Immigration Lawyer

By |November 6th, 2022|Categories: Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees|

It's the American Dream. Millions of people file for immigration status in the USA every year. But, with a very complex immigration process and limits on immigration, many of these applicants are denied. Whether you are applying for immigrant status as a family member, student, employee, or asylum-seeker, the applications are complicated. People make mistakes on their applications or run into immigration issues. This can lead to visa refusals. But, [...]

3010, 2022

Citizenship Filings Processed at Lightning Speed and Other Immigration Law News

By |October 30th, 2022|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published October 30, 2022 Processing times for N-400 applications Lawful permanent residents living in the Chicago area and across the U.S. are seeing their applications for U.S. citizenship processed at record pace.  For my clients across Illinois and Northwest Indiana filing N-400 Applications for Naturalization, we are seeing a total processing time of just 4-5 months – with applicants waiting 90 -120 days for interview scheduling and [...]

1210, 2022

COVID and the Curveballs It Throws at Immigrants

By |October 12th, 2022|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S.|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published October 12, 2022 The COVID pandemic continues to be one giant curveball for societies across the globe.  The way we interact with one another, whether socially or for business, may never be the same.  The pandemic has also led to significant changes in our legal systems and processes, including here in the U.S. and the way our immigration system functions.   Extensive delays define the way many aspects of [...]

210, 2022

How Do You Petition a Family Member for a Visa? Ask a Chicago Immigration Attorney

By |October 2nd, 2022|Categories: Family-Based Immigration Law|

Family-based immigration accounts for nearly 65% of annual lawful immigration to the U.S. In recent years, this number has been as high as 85%. Family reunification continues to be the backbone of the immigration system, and despite long backlogs of applications, it's still one of the best ways to immigrate to the U.S. So read on to learn from a Chicago immigration attorney about how to petition a family member for lawful [...]

2109, 2022

Foreign Nurses, Green Cards and Employment Contracts:  What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

By |September 21st, 2022|Categories: Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S.|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published September 21, 2022 A typical work visa holder in the U.S. often wonders where the grass might be greener as far as work environment is concerned.  That is usually because their aunt has a friend…. who has a cousin…. who knows someone…. who enjoys better pay and conditions working a similar job.  On the other hand, a typical U.S. work visa employer will often wonder how [...]

1109, 2022

Reasons Why Your Green Card Got Denied – Chicago Immigration Attorney

By |September 11th, 2022|Categories: General|

United States immigration laws are notoriously complex. In addition to the plain bases of ineligibility, even a minor mistake on your green card application can lead to a denial. In fact, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) denies thousands of green card applications each year. In 2021, UCSIS denied over 25 percent of the petitions they received. If your green card application was denied or delayed, a Chicago [...]

2408, 2022

Lawsuits Against U.S. Immigration Can Work, Especially When a File is Stuck in a Government Basement

By |August 24th, 2022|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published August 24, 2022 When it comes to a long delayed immigration filing, such as for U.S. citizenship or permanent residence, the decision to sue the government to compel a decision can be a tough one.  Importantly, a lawsuit in this context is not to compel an approval on an application, although that’s what any applicant would hope for.  Instead, the lawsuit is simply a request with a federal judge to [...]

1008, 2022

Green Card Interviews – Why Are They Required? Are They Ever Excused?

By |August 10th, 2022|Categories: General, Green Cards|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published August 10, 2022 With some exceptions, foreign nationals seeking to live and work permanently in the U.S. will undergo some sort of interview before being approved for lawful permanent status, aka Green Card status.  If the applicant is overseas, the process culminates with an ”immigrant visa interview” conducted by a U.S. Department of State official at a U.S. consular post in the applicant’s country of [...]

1807, 2022

I am a U.S. Citizen Residing Abroad But Soon Relocating to the U.S. – How Do My Foreign National Spouse and Child Get Green Cards ASAP?

By |July 18th, 2022|Categories: General, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published July 18, 2022 U.S. citizens live and work all over the world and many of them will face substantial bureaucratic hurdles when it comes to relocating back to the U.S.  One of the most common hurdles involves navigating the U.S. immigration process for their foreign national spouse, child and/or stepchild and trying to minimize any period of separation.  How do I bring my family back to the [...]

2306, 2022

The Dog Ate My Homework OR U.S. Immigration Can’t Process My Citizenship Application Because My File is Stuck in a Government Warehouse Basement

By |June 23rd, 2022|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published June 23, 2022 Over the course of the pandemic, people in the U.S. and around the world have gotten used to all kinds of inconveniences and delays.  There is a new normal out there and we humans have by and large learned to adapt and adjust our expectations.  The world of U.S. immigration and agency processing of applications such as for green cards and US citizenship [...]

606, 2022

What Are the Main Types of Immigration Visas?

By |June 6th, 2022|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

With over 40 million immigrants in the USA, the country is no stranger to newcomers. However, despite the large number that has completed the process successfully, it can seem daunting to those who are about to begin the process or would like to immigrate to the USA and have no idea where to start. If you're thinking about immigrating to the USA, let's see if it's possible. Here are the [...]

2805, 2022

4 Essential Q & A’s on One of the Most Important Defenses to Deportation

By |May 28th, 2022|Categories: General, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published May 28, 2022 For foreign nationals living in the U.S. for an extended period without immigration status, one of the most often used and potent defenses to deportation is an Application for Cancellation of Removal for Nonpermanent Residents (FORM EOIR-42B).  Whether they overstayed their visa or entered the U.S. without inspection, an undocumented foreign national who meets certain eligibility requirements may qualify for Cancellation of Removal, [...]

305, 2022

EAD Backlog: Immigration Authorities Implement Practical Fix for a Pressing Problem

By |May 3rd, 2022|Categories: Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published May 3, 2022 Up until a few years ago, the renewal of Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) for foreign nationals residing in the U.S. was rarely a matter of news or drama.  These days though, EAD holders and their employers are facing way too much challenge when it comes to following the law.  What should be a boring, routine process for our legal immigration system has turned into [...]

1604, 2022

Temporary Business Visa Requirements

By |April 16th, 2022|Categories: Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S.|

Welcome to America—the land of opportunity! If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere. If you've taken the risk of emigrating to America, chances are you are here for a slice of the American Dream. If your "American Dream" involves owning a business, you are going to need to learn the steps of applying for a business visa. We're going to cover everything you need to know [...]

1104, 2022

Nurse Recruiters and Alleged Marriage Fraudsters Face the Legal Music

By |April 11th, 2022|Categories: General, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published April 11, 2022 This past week brought news of companies and individuals facing legal consequences for dishonest and even fraudulent U.S. immigration related enterprises.  The transactions at issue involved foreign nationals being promised U.S. immigration benefits, such as lawful permanent resident status (green card), one by way of the filings of a registered nurse recruiter and the other by way of an "agency" offering to arrange [...]

2703, 2022

Our Nation’s Nursing Crisis: How Quick Fixes to Our Immigration System Could Go a Long Way to Ease the Pain

By |March 27th, 2022|Categories: General, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S.|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published March 24, 2022 While the U.S. faces an unprecedented healthcare worker shortage, our U.S. immigration system in theory potentially offers a variety of solutions toward bringing foreign workers here to fill these roles.  This is especially the case for registered nurses, who work in a space the U.S. Congress, decades ago, has already designated as a “shortage occupation”.  But notwithstanding our nation’s desperate need to [...]

2003, 2022

Where to Find an Immigration Lawyer in Chicago

By |March 20th, 2022|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)|

Despite the pandemic, the number of immigrants looking to make the U.S. their home has reached a 21-year high. Have you recently traveled to America? Are you hoping to apply for citizenship or remain in the country on a student or work visa? If so, it's in your best interests to consult with an immigration lawyer. After all, anti-immigrant rhetoric has been on the rise over the past several years. [...]

603, 2022

Ukrainians in the U.S. Get Temporary Protected Status: What is it? Does it Automatically Lead to Asylum or Green Card?

By |March 6th, 2022|Categories: Asylum in the United States, General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published March 6, 2022 When grave humanitarian crises arise around the world, the U.S. government has the power to provide protection to citizens of impacted nations present in the U.S. by designating those foreign nationals for Temporary Protected Status (TPS).  Whether the crisis is due to war, natural disaster or other extraordinary humanitarian circumstances, TPS allows foreign nationals of that country present in the U.S., and no matter [...]

2702, 2022

What Is a K1 Visa?

By |February 27th, 2022|Categories: Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Visa Lottery and Diversity Visas to the U.S.|

If you are a U.S. citizen and want to marry a foreign national and bring them to live with you in the United States, it's generally not a simple process. One of the most often utilized options in this regard is the K1 visa. In many circumstances, this is the visa that makes the most sense to pursue. So what exactly is the K1 visa, and what can you expect [...]

2002, 2022

Another week, another immigration scam story

By |February 20th, 2022|Categories: Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published February 20, 2022 As an immigration lawyer for the past 30 years, I have learned to never be surprised at the levels of creativity and deceit immigration scammers resort to in carrying out their schemes.  The promise of financial opportunity and freedom in America is the golden lure for ambitious foreign nationals seeking to make a better life for themselves and families.  The more desperate [...]

602, 2022

What to Consider Before Hiring a Chicago Immigration Attorney

By |February 6th, 2022|Categories: General|

Even if it is not a frequent thing, there will come a time in your life when you will need to hire a lawyer for court representation, legal advice, filing, and/or other services. Besides, whether you need immigration legal help individually, or on behalf of your business, one thing is for sure: you should select the right attorney for the best possible outcome. The truth, however, is that selecting the [...]

102, 2022

A Fresh, New Supply of H-1B Visas is About to Drop

By |February 1st, 2022|Categories: General, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published February 1, 2022 The H-1B work visa season will soon be upon us and it’s time to start preparing.  More specifically, starting Noon EST March 1, 2022 and through Noon EST March 18, 2022, registration for the online H-1B visa lottery opens, giving employers a chance at one of 85,000 H-1B visas and for an October 1, 2022 start date, the start of fiscal year [...]

2301, 2022

Our Immigration System Just Became a Little More Welcoming for STEM Grads

By |January 23rd, 2022|Categories: Employment-Based Immigration Law, General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published January 22, 2022 Moving to the U.S. based on a job offer or professional skills is no easy task and can involve some of the most complicated bureaucratic processes our government has to offer.   It’s not that the law is so complicated, as much as it involves a path riddled with hidden mines and obstacles that leave too many talented intending immigrants left looking elsewhere to [...]

801, 2022

7 Tips for Finding The Best Immigration Lawyer in Chicago To Represent You

By |January 8th, 2022|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Each year, there are more than 1 million immigrants come to the United States each year. However, the process to immigrate to the United States is very complicated and taxing. You may need the help of an immigration law firm to help you through the process. Are you looking for the best immigration lawyer in Chicago? Keep reading these top tips for selecting the best Chicago immigration attorney to work with. [...]

3112, 2021

Big Changes: Expedited Employment Authorizations for Healthcare Workers & Interview-less Work Visa Processing

By |December 31st, 2021|Categories: Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published December 31, 2021 Inch by inch, our government is trying to clean up various messes left behind by the Trump administration when it comes to our nation’s legal immigration system.  Whether it be neglected or poorly managed U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services (US DHS/CIS) service centers or understaffed U.S. consular posts abroad, too many aspects of our legal immigration system are now facing monumental, yet avoidable, [...]

1912, 2021

Another Legalization Program That Wasn’t

By |December 19th, 2021|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published December 19, 2021 For the past 20 years, more than a few proposals to help millions of undocumented immigrants come out of the shadows have been presented for Congress’ consideration only to find their way to the waste heap.  Each time a big legalization idea is up for serious discussion, I will generally write about it, only to be forced to pen a follow up account [...]

1112, 2021

Chicago Immigration Attorney: Top Questions to Ask Before Hiring One

By |December 11th, 2021|Categories: General|

By Richard Hanus, Esq, Published December 11, 2021 Are you looking for a Chicago immigration attorney? An immigration lawyer can help you with all of your immigration needs. They are knowledgeable about the laws and regulations that govern U.S. citizenship, visas, green cards, deportation defense, naturalization and more. If you're in need of an experienced professional to represent your interests in court or before government agencies such as USCIS or [...]

212, 2021

Asylum Claim of Gay Man from Mexico Rejected By U.S. Court of Appeals

By |December 2nd, 2021|Categories: Asylum in the United States, General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published December 2, 2021 Under U.S. immigration law, foreign nationals fearing return to their home country due to persecution by their home government on account of their race, religion, political belief or social group are eligible for asylum in the U.S.  In such cases it must be the home country government doing the persecuting, or a group the government is unwilling or unable to control.  If these [...]

1411, 2021

Dude, Where’s My EAD?

By |November 14th, 2021|Categories: Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published November 14, 2021 Next to a U.S. passport, or permanent resident card (“green card”), the Employment Authorization Document is perhaps the most valuable document issued by our immigration authorities.  A valid Employment Authorization Document, or EAD, can make or break a foreign national’s life in the U.S., providing a legal basis to work, obtain a social security number and maintain a driver’s license.  It can also impact [...]

711, 2021

Do You Really Need a Chicago Immigration Lawyer? Here’s How to Figure Out the Answer

By |November 7th, 2021|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

By Richard Hanus, Esq. Many people do not appreciate how much value immigration lawyers create for individuals, families and companies looking to navigate our complex immigration system.  They help to radically transform lives and companies by helping family members and key employees move to new countries. Maybe that is why the market for immigration lawyers is worth more than $5 billion every year! Of course, there are a lot of [...]

3110, 2021

Battered Spouses and U.S. Immigration – 2021 Update

By |October 31st, 2021|Categories: Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Family-Based Immigration Law, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

By, Richard Hanus, Esq. Published October 31, 2021 In the world of U.S. immigration law, a foreign national battered husband or wife, and sometimes child, may be eligible for special immigration benefits, including permanent resident status – and all without the cooperation of their abusive U.S. citizen or resident spouse or parent.   Indeed, foreign nationals who marry U.S. citizens or residents are often vulnerable to the whims, cruelty and even brutality of their U.S. spouse, and accordingly, Congress enacted a variety of laws aimed at protecting these foreign nationals.   The following is a summary of the legal options available to achieve […]

2410, 2021

What to Look For in a U.S. Immigration Lawyer

By |October 24th, 2021|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

By, Richard Hanus, Esq. You open up the mail and find a notice that your green card application is denied, or even worse, deportation proceedings are being initiated against you. What do you do now? This is when you need to contact an immigration lawyer. An immigration lawyer focuses on helping clients who are dealing with a wide variety of immigration issues. This includes benefits, citizenship, green cards, and visas. [...]

1810, 2021

COVID Vaccine = Easier Entry into the U.S.

By |October 18th, 2021|Categories: Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published October 18, 2021 U.S. immigration law is confusing enough.  Add the pandemic to the mix and the confusion increases exponentially.  When it comes to foreign national entry into the U.S., a mish mosh of COVID related restrictions have been set in place over the past 21 months both from the U.S. side as well as via foreign nation restrictions.  Factor in COVID related delays at U.S. consular [...]

1110, 2021

4 Things to Know About Immigration Law

By |October 11th, 2021|Categories: Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees|

By, Richard Hanus, Esq. Almost 45 million people immigrated to the United States in 2019. For reference, the total population of the United States is about 320 million. 45 million is quite a large number, but the reality is that immigration is beginning to slow. While it's still increasing overall, the rate of increase is slowing, and we may very eventually see a decline. Changes to our immigration laws over [...]

410, 2021

The Biden Administration Rolls Out a New Approach to DACA

By |October 4th, 2021|Categories: Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published October 4, 2021 For the past decade, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program has given more than 700,000 undocumented young adults a chance at a normal life, albeit only in renewable, 2 year increments.  Since its inception though, DACA has been the subject of contentious political feuding and dozens of federal court challenges.  In the past week, as Congress squabbles endlessly over pending infrastructure [...]

2609, 2021

Legal Services Offered by U.S. Immigration Lawyers

By |September 26th, 2021|Categories: Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas|

By Richard Hanus Published September 26, 2021 Twenty-six percent of the United States' population is made up of immigrants from other countries, totaling approximately  85.7 million people .  Furthermore, based on recent trends - including world politics and economics - the popularity of the U.S. as an immigration destination will only increase in the immediate future. For immigrants residing in the U.S., both in legal and undocumented status, there is [...]

1909, 2021

The Latest on I-751 Receipts and DHS/CIS COVID Vaccine Requirements

By |September 19th, 2021|Categories: Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published September 19, 2021 I-751 Receipts Now Feature a 24 month Extension of Resident Status Foreign nationals obtaining lawful permanent resident status, also known as a “green card”, based on a recent marriage are accorded a 2 year conditional resident card – a process that is among the most popular U.S. immigration avenues.  The process of renewing the 2 year card involves the filing of an I-751 Petition [...]

709, 2021

Best Immigration Law Firms: What to Look For

By |September 7th, 2021|Categories: General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published September 7, 2021 Are you or a loved one in need of an attorney to assist you with a United States immigration matter? Are you among the more than 800,000 immigrants looking to apply for naturalization in the country each year? Whether you are applying for U.S. permanent residence or naturalization, seeking asylum, or attempting to obtain a temporary U.S. visa, you need an experienced [...]

2908, 2021

No Covid-19 Vaccination, No Green Card: New Requirement for Adjustment of Status Applicants

By |August 29th, 2021|Categories: General, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published August 29, 2021 The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) just announced it now classifies COVID-19 as a “Class A inadmissible condition”, and applicants present in the U.S. seeking to adjust status to lawful permanent resident (green card) will soon be required to provide proof of vaccination.  The COVID 19 vaccine requirement goes into effect for immigration related medical exams performed on or after October 1, 2021, adding [...]

2208, 2021

How to Apply for U.S. Citizenship

By |August 22nd, 2021|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published August 22, 2021 Are you thinking about applying for U.S. citizenship? You're far from alone. The United States has long been recognized as a country that boasts plenty of opportunities and as a safe place for families to grow and thrive. That said, the process required to get into the United States has many legal requirements before you're admitted into the country as a citizen. [...]

1008, 2021

2021 Update – Marriage Based Green Card Interview Horror Stories

By |August 10th, 2021|Categories: Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published August 10, 2021 Question: Which travels quicker – good news or bad news?  Bad news, of course.  “Train Wrecks” are exciting, interesting, sensational and satisfying.  Yep, train wrecks sell! For instance – in the U.S. government realm, when was the last time you heard about how great the U.S. postal system, or any government agency, was working?  And those green card interview stories, where marriage to a U.S. citizen or permanent resident is involved!  Everyone has heard about them – either from their friends or acquaintances, the movie “Green Card”, or simply by surfing the internet and coming […]

208, 2021

The Grounds for Deportation From the United States

By |August 2nd, 2021|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published August 2, 2021 In 2018, over 300,000 immigrants were deported from the United States. While the U.S. houses millions of immigrants, there are plenty of ways the government can deem your status illegal and seek to send you back to your home country. Understanding grounds for deportation is crucial to gaining insight into ways a foreign national, non-U.S. citizent's future in the U.S. might be [...]

2607, 2021

With Another Pause in the Program, Will DACA Immigrants Ever Find Peace?

By |July 26th, 2021|Categories: Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published July 26, 2021 It’s been almost 10 years since our nation put into action an initiative known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or “DACA” to allow undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children to have a morsel of immigration status.  This morsel came in the form of a 2 year, renewable employment authorization document and a shield from being deported.  After various stops and starts in [...]

1807, 2021

A Brief Overview of Biden’s Immigration Policy

By |July 18th, 2021|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published July 18, 2021 America is more of a salad than a melting pot. More than one million people obtained lawful permanent resident status in 2019. They came from all over the world, bringing their skills and cultures into America. The White House has framed Biden's immigration policy as facilitating that mission. They promise to help thousands of immigrants establish homes in the country. But how [...]

1207, 2021

The Cruelest Processing Delays Immigration Applicants Face These Days

By |July 12th, 2021|Categories: General, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published July 12, 2021 Whether because of the pandemic or the previous administration’s lowered prioritization of many aspects of our legal immigration system, record setting delays in immigration processes have been many and far reaching.  The two agencies most responsible for processing immigration benefits are the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Citizenship and Immigration Services (DHS/CIS) and the U.S. Department of State.  The delays plaguing these [...]

307, 2021

Understanding the U.S. Refugee Law: Refugee Rights and Protection

By |July 3rd, 2021|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

By Richard Hanus, Esq. Published July 3, 2021 Are you a refugee? Are you trying to bring a loved one to the U.S. who is a refugee and in order to protect them? Refugee law can seem complicated and confusing to anyone who isn't well-versed in refugee rights and protections. Trying to navigate this area of law and its related processes without significant expertise and experience will undoubtedly be challenging. [...]

2706, 2021

Life is About to Get Better For Pending “U” Victim Visa Applicants

By |June 27th, 2021|Categories: Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published June 27, 2021 Undocumented foreign nationals in the U.S. who have been the victim of certain types of crimes have a potent option in the U visa to legalize their status and eventually attain U.S. permanent residence (green card) and even citizenship.  Now that option is even more powerful as a recently announced policy will allow applicants to have a chance to obtain an Employment Authorization [...]

2006, 2021

The Different Types of Green Cards Explained

By |June 20th, 2021|Categories: Employment-Based Immigration Law, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published June 20, 2021 The Trump administration was not a positive force for immigrants in the US. However, recent changes made by the Biden administration make things far less difficult for immigrants to acquire a green card. If you're interested in how to get a green card, first consider what categories of eligibility are available.  In this regard, there are various avenues to green card, and each [...]

1306, 2021

Dipping our Toes In Legalizationland: ICE Prosecutors To Exercise Discretion Again

By |June 13th, 2021|Categories: General, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published June 13, 2021 With 12 million or so foreign nationals residing in the U.S. without lawful immigration status, agents of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement department have no shortage of work to carry out.  Indeed, this has been our nation’s steady reality for decades and our most recent ex-President ascended to office with promises to leave no undocumented person behind, [...]

506, 2021

5 Immigration Laws to Know About Before Moving to the US

By |June 5th, 2021|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published June 5, 2021 For centuries, America has been a prime destination for international immigrants. If you're currently considering coming to the US, then following the law is paramount. Consistent with the public's perception, our overall immigration system can present problems now. Temporary detention centers are way over capacity, and Covid-19 hasn't made things easier. The pandemic has been causing extreme delays, supply shortages, and more. [...]

2905, 2021

Disrupting an Immigration Nightmare: A Little Relief for Noncitizens Falling into the Voter Registration Trap

By |May 29th, 2021|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published May 29, 2021 What do you get when you combine a motor voter system that too easily registers non-citizens to vote and federal laws that impose extreme immigration consequences for unsuspecting, inadvertent registrants and voters?  I call it government assisted immigration suicide.  Sounds hyperbolic, I know.  But it’s the best way to describe how well intended laws designed to make voter registration quick and easy can also [...]

2305, 2021

Understanding the Trump Immigration Law Changes

By |May 23rd, 2021|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

By Richard Hanus, Esq. Published May 23, 2021 During his four years in office, former President Trump transformed the immigration system in the United States. He issued more than 400 executive actions that cut legal immigration significantly . One of President Biden's priorities has been undoing much of former President Trump's legacy with his own executive actions. Yet, Trump immigration law has left a mark on the U.S. immigration system. [...]

1705, 2021

Reversal of Bad Immigration Policy Just Quietly Happened and the Consequences for Immigrants and Their Employers are Huge

By |May 17th, 2021|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), General|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published May 17, 2021 Attaining lawful permanent resident (Green Card) status by way of a job offer and one’s advanced education and/or experience is among the most obstacle ridden processes on our nation’s immigration benefits menu.  There are countless ways the process can fail, whether the worker is abroad waiting to obtain an immigrant visa from a U.S. consular post or even more so, when the applicant [...]

705, 2021

State vs Federal Immigration Law: The Main Differences

By |May 7th, 2021|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

By:  Richard Hanus, Esq. Published May 7, 2021 With one million immigrants coming to the US every year, there are laws in place to control and regulate entry into the United States. It is important to understand that there is both state and federal immigration law. Although the two share many similarities, there are notable differences as well. This guide will compare the two so that you can be more informed, especially if you're [...]

205, 2021

SCOTUS Issues a Game Changer for Those Fighting Deportation

By |May 2nd, 2021|Categories: General, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

Published May 1, 2021 By Richard Hanus, Esq. The U.S. Supreme Court this past week issued a major decision regarding the way foreign nationals must be notified to appear for their initial court date for removal (aka deportation) proceedings.  The decision was noteworthy in many regards, including that it bulks up the rights of immigrants fighting to remain in the U.S. and that it was penned by a notoriously conservative judge, with [...]

2404, 2021

When to Hire an Immigration Law Firm

By |April 24th, 2021|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)|

Published April 24, 2021 By Richard Hanus, Esq. Immigration is a hot-button topic in the United States, the topic of many a political debate. The laws regarding immigration in the U.S. have continued to shift and change in the wake of all this discussion. If you're attempting to navigate a tricky immigration situation, it's a difficult time. Not all legal immigration situations will require the assistance of an immigration attorney. [...]

2004, 2021

The New Director of Homeland Security’s Immigration Agency Has Her Work Cut Out for Her

By |April 20th, 2021|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), General|

Published April 20, 2021 By Richard Hanus, Esq. U.S. immigration law is many things to many people.  To the vast majority of the American public, it is what makes the loudest news in the general media.  These days it’s all about what goes on at the U.S. southern border, and how things are, or are not, under control.  But that story is just a tiny sliver of our nation’s overall immigration [...]

604, 2021

Putting an End to Visa Bans and Blank Space Rejections

By |April 6th, 2021|Categories: Asylum in the United States, General, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B|

Published April 6, 2021 By Richard Hanus, Esq. Visa Bans:  On April 20, 2020, as it became obvious the pandemic was neither a hoax nor a societal challenge that would simply “disappear”, President Trump tweeted:  “In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens, I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United [...]

2203, 2021

The Green Card and Naturalization Processes Just Got Easier

By |March 22nd, 2021|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Family-Based Immigration Law, General|

Published March 22, 2021 By Richard Hanus, Esq. The Biden Administration recently removed two significant Trump-era obstacles for applicants seeking lawful permanent residence (Green Card) and U.S. Citizenship.  These obstacles were seen by many as purposeful government strategies aimed to cut down on the issuance of U.S. immigration benefits for foreign nationals and without a solid public policy purpose.  Just as important, it seemed the Trump administration’s implementation of the [...]

703, 2021

It’s the Time of the Season, When Love of the H-1B Runs High

By |March 7th, 2021|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Foreign Exchange Student Visas to the U.S., General, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B|

Published March 7, 2021 By Richard Hanus, Esq. It’s H-1B work visa registration season, and by the end of this month, US Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services (US CIS) will have completed its selection of 85,000 lucky registrants for the H-1B visa lottery.  Starting Noon EST on March 9, 2021, the online H-1B visa registration period will open for the fiscal year 2022 - which itself starts October 1, 2021.  The registration [...]

2202, 2021

Biden Reaches For the Stars and Starts an Important Immigration Conversation

By |February 22nd, 2021|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Asylum in the United States, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, General, immigration reform, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published February 22, 2021 By Richard Hanus, Esq. It’s been more than 20 years since our nation has enacted any significant legislation to allow our nation’s undocumented population an avenue to legalize their status.  The most recent provision,  Section 245(i) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, was neither simple nor straightforward.  It was potent, though, affording hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of otherwise law abiding foreign nationals without immigration status a path [...]

2601, 2021

6 Big Immigration Happenings Under President Biden

By |January 26th, 2021|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Asylum in the United States, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General, Green Cards, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published January 26, 2021 By Richard Hanus, Esq. Even before President Biden took office, the nonstop flow of news relating to immigration law began.  How will things be different with President Biden when it comes to immigration law and policy, especially after 4 years of the Trump administration’s harsh tone and policies?  In the past 10 days, the Biden administration has announced dozens of important immigration initiatives, some being Executive [...]

801, 2021

Facebook Live Event: Save the Date – Post Inauguration Immigration Law Update and Q & A

By |January 8th, 2021|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, General, immigration reform, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published January 8, 2021 By Richard Hanus, Esq. Join us on Thursday, January 28, 2021 @ 7:00 pm CST when we will be getting the first glimpse of any new immigration policies Joe Biden has in mind for the start of his presidency as well as his possible agenda for major immigration legislation.  Richard Hanus will discuss the immediate and near future impact a Biden presidency will have on our [...]

301, 2021

How to Get a Green Card Through Your Job

By |January 3rd, 2021|Categories: Employment-Based Immigration Law, General, Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigration and PERM / Labor Certification, United States Embassies Abroad|

Published January 3, 2021 By Richard Hanus, Esq. After family based immigration, the next most popular avenue to live and work in the U.S. on a permanent basis is the “green card” by way of a job or job talents.  Most employment based paths to lawful permanent resident (green card) status, require a financially viable employer to offer the foreign national a job and where U.S. workers are unavailable to [...]

3012, 2020

How to Get a Green Card For Your Parent

By |December 30th, 2020|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., United States Embassies Abroad|

Published December 27, 2020 By Richard Hanus, Esq. There are a couple dozen ways a foreign national can come live in the U.S. as a lawful permanent resident (aka as a “green card” holder) with most involving either a family or employer/employee relationship.  When it comes to family relationships, an adult U.S. citizen’s petition for their foreign national parent is among the most popular and efficient processes available. The basic [...]

2012, 2020

How Much is Too Much? When Visiting the U.S. Can Be Hazardous to Your Immigration Health

By |December 20th, 2020|Categories: Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., General, United States Embassies Abroad|

Published December 20, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. Approximately 80 million foreign nationals visit the U.S. annually.  They come to see family and friends, attend special celebrations, visit tourist attractions and conduct business meetings.  They enter on B-1/B-2 visitor visas issued by U.S. consular posts abroad or without visas, if they are Canadian or pursuant to the Electronic System Travel Authorization (“ESTA”) program if they are citizens of certain nations.  Two common question presented on [...]

112, 2020

How to Get a Green Card for Your Child

By |December 1st, 2020|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Family-Based Immigration Law, General, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published December 1, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. A foreign national has more than a few ways available to facilitate lawful permanent residence, aka “green card” status, for their child.   The exact path the process takes depends on a variety of factors, including whether the child’s parent is a U.S. citizen, a lawful permanent resident or is just in the process of obtaining permanent resident status.  Also important is whether the child being [...]

2611, 2020

How the Anxiety of Becoming a Naturalized U.S. Citizen is About to Double

By |November 26th, 2020|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), General, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published November 26, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. Becoming a U.S. citizen can present numerous challenges for applicants, whether intellectually, logistically or in many cases, emotionally.  A deeply personal and meaningful process in the hands of a U.S. Department of Homeland Security immigration officer is an experience that can cause many foreign nationals to feel uneasy and full of angst, no matter their eligibility or confidence in other aspects of life.  [...]

1411, 2020

The Top 5 Ways It’s a New Day for U.S. Immigration Under A Biden Administration

By |November 14th, 2020|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Asylum in the United States, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published November 14, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. In recent memory there has not been an administration as singularly focused on immigration law as President Trump's. Donald Trump ascended into office because of loud immigration rhetoric, and while in the White House, dedicated a massive effort at transforming our nation’s immigration policies impacting both illegal and legal immigration.  As to curtailing illegal immigration, although he failed to round up and [...]

911, 2020

How To Get A Green Card Through Marriage

By |November 9th, 2020|Categories: Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Family-Based Immigration Law, General, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published November 9, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. Obtaining lawful permanent residence, or green card status, by way of a genuine, bona fide marriage to a U.S. citizen or a lawful permanent resident is one of the more commonly used processes under U.S. immigration law. Much of the time processing of a marriage based filing remains straightforward, although a number of factors can complicate things, such as sudden changes in [...]

311, 2020

Save the Date – Facebook Live Event – Post Election Immigration Law Coverage and Q & A

By |November 3rd, 2020|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published November 3, 2020 Save the Date - November 23, 2020, 7:30 pm CST - when Richard Hanus will break down how the outcome of the presidential election impacts our nation’s immigration law landscape.  Richard will also entertain all of your questions and provide practical feedback and insight.  We look forward to your participation at this live event at: https://fb.me/e/285dn9Pmo.   Please forward your questions in advance to [email protected] or through our [...]

910, 2020

In Home Stretch of Re-election Campaign, Trump Pumps Up the Volume on Deportations and H-1B Visa Restrictions

By |October 9th, 2020|Categories: Asylum in the United States, DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published October 9, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. Pecking Away At H-1B Visas:  Over the past 7 months, the Trump Administration has unleashed a deluge of measures impacting our legal immigration process, both for family based, and job based filings.   In the workplace context, it’s become significantly more complicated for employers to hire and retain foreign nationals or otherwise comply with our immigration laws.  Not only is the Administration not creating more “merit [...]

510, 2020

Mark the Date – October 21, 2020 – Richard Hanus Takes Your Questions In His Next Live Immigration Law Forum!

By |October 5th, 2020|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published October 5, 2020 Richard Hanus will shed light on all of your simple and complex immigration law questions.  October 21, 2020 is the date and you can participate in this live event at : https://fb.me/e/4pPLlRbfg Submit your questions during the event on October 21, or in advance to [email protected] or through our website contact form  https://www.usavisacounsel.com/contact and Richard will do his best to incorporate discussion on your question. At our last [...]

2409, 2020

How Do I Apply for a Green Card ?

By |September 24th, 2020|Categories: Asylum in the United States, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Immigration and PERM / Labor Certification, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

Published September 23, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq.   How do I get a green card in the U.S.?  It’s one of the more common questions an immigration lawyer gets asked.    The answer is many layered and involves dozens of variables, but in the end there are some basic principles that the asker of this question will want to know about, and here they are.   First, what is a [...]

209, 2020

Q & A with U.S. Immigration Law Expert, Richard Hanus – Attorney at Law

By |September 2nd, 2020|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published September 2, 2020 Tune in on September 17, 2020 at 7 pm CDT when I will be hosting the first of a series of live web events to address the latest U.S. immigration law issues facing individuals, families and businesses. See: https://www.facebook.com/events/633307637623680/ I will answer your questions on topics ranging from green cards, U.S. citizenship, work visas and defense in deportation/removal proceedings. Whether you are in the U.S. or [...]

2608, 2020

With Filing Fees Skyrocketing in October, Now Might be the Perfect Time to Apply to Become a U.S. Citizen

By |August 26th, 2020|Categories: Asylum in the United States, Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published August 26, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. As of October 2, 2020, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s immigration benefits arm – Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) - is set to increase filing fees on a variety of applications.  Most notably, the filing fee to submit an N-400 Application for Naturalization, currently totaling $725.00, is scheduled to skyrocket to $1,170.00 when the new fee schedule takes effect. Other filing fee increases [...]

3007, 2020

Uncertainty All Around For DACA and U.S. Immigration Operations In General

By |July 30th, 2020|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published July 30, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. The nonstop, unprecedented flow of immigration news continues, including with regard to the impact of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision rejecting the Trump Administration’s attempt to terminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Executive Order.  For certain, since the SCOTUS ruling, the Administration has waffled about DACA’s future, first making it clear it was going back to the drawing board to [...]

1607, 2020

10 Years Just Happened in 3 Months – An Unprecedented Volume of Immigration Law Events

By |July 16th, 2020|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Asylum in the United States, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Foreign Exchange Student Visas to the U.S., Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Immigration and PERM / Labor Certification, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S., United States Embassies Abroad|

Published July 16, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. In my 25+ years as an immigration lawyer, my area of practice has never been as important or relevant as it is today.  This Administration has made it this way, bringing U.S. immigration law into the spotlight as one of the bedrock issues of its campaign and presidency.   Whether it really merits this level of attention is questionable, given other more pressing problems plaguing [...]

3006, 2020

Supreme Court Administers CPR and Revives DACA…..For Now

By |June 30th, 2020|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., immigration reform, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published June 30, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals – better known as DACA – was an Executive Order issued by President Obama in 2012 after our Congress was unable to agree on an appropriate answer to our nation’s “12 million undocumented” state of affairs.  Once in place, DACA allowed approximately 700,000 young adults who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children to gain legal [...]

2306, 2020

A Chokehold On Legal Immigration: 6 Things to Know About the Extended Immigration Ban and Where Things are Headed

By |June 23rd, 2020|Categories: Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Foreign Exchange Student Visas to the U.S., Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, United States Embassies Abroad|

Published June 23, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. 1. The Administration says it is looking to protect or create American jobs with the latest immigration ban and eventually seek to establish a merit based immigration system.  But a close look at the Administration's actions for the past 3+ years will reveal a methodical strategy to thwart practically every process available for individuals and companies to utilize established immigration laws.  With [...]

1106, 2020

Immigration Related Government Offices Inching Their Way Back To Normalcy

By |June 11th, 2020|Categories: Asylum in the United States, Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

Published June 11, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. U.S. Department of Homeland Security – Citizenship and Immigration Service local offices (US DHS/CIS): In the past week, the public has seen the first signs of normal operations at US DHS/CIS offices across the U.S., including the Chicago Field Office.   Approved applicants for U.S. citizenship who have been waiting to be scheduled for a ceremony to be sworn in as U.S. citizens are finally [...]

706, 2020

Update: Immigration Options for Healthcare Professionals in the Age of Covid-19

By |June 7th, 2020|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigration and PERM / Labor Certification, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, United States Embassies Abroad|

Published June 7, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. Although the April 20, 2020 Executive Order on Immigration placed significant obstacles to immigration into the U.S., important exceptions were made for healthcare workers.  Further, the U.S. Department of State had previously announced its intention to give priority and expedited visa processing for healthcare professionals seeking to enter the U.S. during the Covid-19 pandemic.  Specifically, the U.S. Department of State on March 26, 2020 [...]

2805, 2020

Another Federal Court Win For Work Visa Employers and Workers; Do We Really Want to Put Out the Unwelcome Mat for Talented Foreign Students?

By |May 28th, 2020|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Foreign Exchange Student Visas to the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published May 28, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. Securing approval of an immigration petition filing to facilitate the employment of a foreign professional and issuance of an H-1B visa has only gotten harder over the years, especially under the current administration. But in response to lawsuits filed challenging the legality of  denials of H-1B petitions for workers assigned to 3rd party work locations, the federal government has agreed to settle the dispute and [...]

1305, 2020

Large Scale H-1B Visa Lawsuit Settled; The Latest on Immigration Office and Court Operations

By |May 13th, 2020|Categories: Asylum in the United States, Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, United States Embassies Abroad|

Published May 13, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. Update:  One Year and a Federal Lawsuit Later, DHS Finally Approves 150 Pending H-1B Filings for Lab Technologists I cannot recall a time when so many federal lawsuits to compel or correct decisions by the Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services (DHS/CIS) have been filed.  One recent example is the lawsuit filed by Management Healthcare Systems LLC (doing business as MedPro Staffing) [...]

2304, 2020

The New Executive Order on Immigration: 6 Essential Insights

By |April 23rd, 2020|Categories: Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Foreign Exchange Student Visas to the U.S., Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, United States Embassies Abroad|

Published April 22, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. 1. It was the evening of April 20, 2020 and President Trump tweeted an ominous new policy on immigration - a measure as sweeping and extreme as it gets: “In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens, I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend [...]

1404, 2020

US CIS Rolls Out New H-1B Visa Registration: A Story of Success and Glitches

By |April 14th, 2020|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B|

Published April 14, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. By the end of last March, US Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services completed its selection of 85,000 lucky registrants for the H-1B visa lottery.  Employers submitted a total of 275,000 electronic registrations during a 3 week period last month to claim from the supply of 85,000 visas.  Except for a very small percentage of registrations now in question, the process [...]

104, 2020

Covid-19 and the Latest on Immigration-Related Government Office Operations and Policies

By |April 1st, 2020|Categories: Asylum in the United States, Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

Published April 1, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. I will start with the most recent events.  The first concerns removal/deportation proceedings against detained (in custody) immigrants.   Just yesterday, a variety of immigration lawyer advocacy groups, on behalf of several detained foreign nationals, filed suit against the U.S. Department of Justice and the Executive Office of Immigration Review (EOIR) to put a halt to the policy of requiring attorneys and their detained [...]

1903, 2020

U.S. Immigration Offices and Courts – Confusion, Delay and Finally Some Definite News

By |March 19th, 2020|Categories: Asylum in the United States, Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

Published March 19, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. The last few weeks have been a whirlwind, even a hailstorm, of information, misinformation, panic and confusion. On the most basic level, the lack of definite information about the extent of the coronavirus in general has been alarming. Of course there was and is so much we do not and could not know. On the other hand, the amount of knowable, concrete [...]

503, 2020

U.S. Supreme Court: Providing False Information on Form I-9 Can Lead to State Criminal ID Theft Charges

By |March 5th, 2020|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published March 5, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. Form I-9 is the document employers and employees complete and sign to confirm an employee’s eligibility to be lawfully employed in the U.S.  For foreign nationals residing and working in the U.S. without immigration status, completion of the  I-9 often involves a complicated and perilous set of decisions, especially when the worker is submitting a job application under an assumed name and/or [...]

2002, 2020

Health Care Staffing Company Sues DHS Due to Inaction on Long Pending H-1B Visa Filings

By |February 20th, 2020|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, Uncategorized|

Published February 20, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. When a U.S. company seeks to have a qualified foreign national fill a professional type position in the U.S., an H-1B visa petition is the typical go-to route, although obtaining approval these days can be tricky.  Whether because of the limited yearly supply of H-1B visas available or due to the recent trend toward heightened, even unlawfully high, scrutiny, getting an H-1B [...]

802, 2020

The New Public Charge Rule

By |February 8th, 2020|Categories: Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published February 8, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. With the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent green light, U.S. immigration authorities have announced it will start applying new “public charge” restrictions on February 24, 2020.  The new set of public charge rules expand the discretionary authority of agency officials to deny green card applications and allow for more factors to be considered in determining whether an applicant is likely to be become [...]

1601, 2020

California Immigration Lawyer Goes to Prison

By |January 16th, 2020|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Immigration and PERM / Labor Certification, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B|

Published January 16, 2020 By: Richard Hanus, Esq. A California immigration lawyer was recently sentenced to 18 months in federal prison and ordered to pay back taxes for her participation in an extensive and highly profitable visa fraud scheme. The scheme involved the preparation and filing of hundreds of fraudulent work visa applications and failure to pay income tax over a 17 year period.  Mihae Park, a 54 year old [...]

3112, 2019

2 or More DUI Convictions Are Now a Greater Obstacle for Immigration Applicants

By |December 31st, 2019|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published December 31, 2019 In a recent ruling, the Attorney General of the United States announced a policy that will make it more difficult for foreign nationals with 2 or more driving under the influence of alcohol convictions to defend against deportation proceedings or ever become a U.S. citizen. The directive arose in the context of defining “good moral character” for purposes of undocumented foreign nationals fighting removal proceedings (also [...]

812, 2019

Trump Administration Seeking Massive Increases in Immigration Filing Fees

By |December 8th, 2019|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published December 8, 2019 Many prospective applicants for immigration related benefits are looking to stay a step ahead and submit their filings before a massive increase in application fees may be taking effect in coming months. More specifically, an increase in filing fees has been proposed for a wide array of applications submitted for consideration by U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Citizenship and Immigration Services or “USCIS” (DHS’ immigration benefits [...]

1411, 2019

DACA Argued Before The U.S. Supreme Court

By |November 14th, 2019|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published November 14, 2019 In 2012, President Obama issued an executive order allowing undocumented foreign nationals who arrived in the U.S. under the age of 16 to be shielded from deportation and issued an employment authorization document.  Eligibility for coverage under the Executive Order – Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) depended on a number of factors, including whether the applicant had a serious criminal background and was physically present [...]

2910, 2019

Federal Court Injunctions Put a Halt to New Public Charge Rules

By |October 29th, 2019|Categories: Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas|

Published October 29, 2019 Conversations involving the hot topics of public benefits and immigration have turned scary these days.  That is because these are two of the biggest go-to issues for the Trump administration when it comes to political messaging and rousing up supporters.  However, in just the past week 5 federal judges, presiding over 5 separate legal challenges, have ruled against the Trump administration.  The rulings put a halt [...]

1510, 2019

Immigration Judges Union Alleges Unfair Labor Practices

By |October 15th, 2019|Categories: DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published October 15, 2019 In all, there are more than 400 immigration judges in the U.S., and they are employed by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Executive Office of Immigration Review (DOJ/EOIR) to preside over removal proceedings and essentially decide who gets to remain in the U.S and who must depart.  Of course, there are laws that govern the decision-making process, and the judges making these decision are charged with [...]

910, 2019

Meet Richard Hanus, the attorney whose real-life case became the hit play, “The Courtroom”

By |October 9th, 2019|Categories: General|

Richard Hanus with producer, director, the Keathleys and cast Richard Hanus never thought he’d be a silent star of a major New York play. But the veteran Chicago immigration attorney is just that as the play “The Courtroom” began its latest run in the Big Apple on Oct. 24, and with the next production slated for December 9. The play is based on a full transcript of court [...]

2209, 2019

Appeals Filing Fee May Skyrocket; Processing Times for Chicago Area Applicants

By |September 22nd, 2019|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

Published September 22, 2019   Administration Aims to Dramatically Increase Filing Fees for Appeals In an effort that will effectively deter appeals of certain immigration decisions within the deportation court system, the Trump administration is reportedly advancing a regulation to dramatically increase the filing fees associated with such appeals. The regulatory proposal being considered would increase the current filing fee of $110.00 by 900% to a total of $975.00 in [...]

2209, 2019

Deferred Action Comes to an End

By |September 22nd, 2019|Categories: Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published September 22, 2019 In an abrupt, yet not surprising policy decision, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced it is putting a halt to a Deferred Action program that has been a part of the immigration law and prosecutorial discretion landscape for more than 4 decades.  The political reasons for this announcement are obvious, but there exists no real practical reason for the program’s termination since it’s been employed [...]

3108, 2019

The New, Sharper Teeth of Existing Public Charge Provisions

By |August 31st, 2019|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S., United States Embassies Abroad|

Published August 31, 2019 Concerns about new immigrants becoming a “public charge” and dependent on U.S. government resources, have pretty much always been a part of our immigration related legal landscape.  Form I-864 Affidavit of Support – a document required for the final stages of nearly all family based immigration filings - is the most well known representation of this concern.  Typically U.S. based petitioning family members are required to [...]

3108, 2019

Richard Hanus Talks Immigration Law, Business, and Politics on Scott Becker’s Business Leadership Podcast

By |August 31st, 2019|Categories: General|

Published August 31, 2019 Richard Hanus recently appeared on the popular Scott Becker Business Leadership Podcast, discussing a myriad of topics such as practicing immigration law in the Trump era, starting his own law firm  and deciding on a professional path. PUBLISHED August 31, 2019– “IMMIGRATION LAW FORUM” Copyright © 2019, By Law Offices of Richard Hanus, Chicago, Illinois

1108, 2019

H-1B Visas Make News in the Courts

By |August 11th, 2019|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Foreign Exchange Student Visas to the U.S., Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published August 24, 2019 D.C. Federal Court Reverses H-1B Visa Petition Denial In the past week, a federal judge in Washington D.C. ruled that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services (US CIS) must reverse its decision denying an H-1B visa petition filed on behalf of a data analyst by Lexis Nexis, a legal publishing company.  The court concluded that the petitioning employer, Lexis Nexis USA, presented sufficient [...]

2507, 2019

Expedited Deportation for Undocumented Recent Arrivals

By |July 25th, 2019|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Asylum in the United States, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), General, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, immigration reform, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published July 24, 2019 The number of foreign nationals living in the U.S. in violation of our immigration laws is estimated to be in the area of 12 million. Whether they overstayed their visa status or entered without any visa or inspection at all, these are the individuals our society deems “undocumented”, or in some circles, “illegal aliens”.  No matter the label, the vast majority of these individuals have a [...]

1107, 2019

DACA’s Future Hangs in the Balance At the U.S. Supreme Court

By |July 11th, 2019|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Green Cards, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published July 11, 2019 In recent weeks, the U.S. Supreme Court announced that it has accepted several consolidated DACA related cases for consideration and in October will hear arguments about DACA’s future. Obama Giveth, Trump Seeks to Taketh Away: To review, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program was instituted in 2012 by way of then President Obama’s Executive Order.  Through the DACA program, individuals who arrived in the [...]

2906, 2019

Deporting Millions, Deporting 2,000 – Same Thing

By |June 29th, 2019|Categories: Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), General, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published June 29, 2019 On June 17, 2019, President Donald Trump tweeted one of the scarier official presidential communications I have heard in my lifetime: “Next week ICE will begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States. They will be removed as fast as they come in. Mexico, using their strong immigration laws, is doing a very good [...]

2006, 2019

As Expected – Expanded Supply of H-2B Temporary Workers Visas Is Quickly Exhausted

By |June 20th, 2019|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., immigration reform, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published June 20, 2019   Ask anyone who works as a manager in the manufacturing or service industries and they will tell you that it is next to impossible to find U.S. workers to fill positions, both skilled and unskilled, and even at a competitive wage.   This speaks volumes about many societal issues, including that our economy appears to be robust, and there is a shortage of workers ready, willing [...]

2006, 2019

Facing Deportation: What Do Immigration Lawyers Do And How Can They Help Me?

By |June 20th, 2019|Categories: Uncategorized|

Facing Deportation: What Do Immigration Lawyers Do And How Can They Help Me?   Over the past decade, over 7 million people have gained legal citizenship in the United States. But there are countless others trying and waiting to have their dream of citizenship realized as well, and many others who have had their hopes lost in the process. Perhaps you're trying to obtain citizenship and have been surprised at [...]

1306, 2019

Avoiding Deportation: Why Working With United States Immigration Lawyers Can Help You Stay In The Country

By |June 13th, 2019|Categories: General|

Avoiding Deportation: Why Working With United States Immigration Lawyers Can Help You Stay In The Country   There were about 436 immigration arrests per day in the U.S. between February 2017 and September 2018. Refugee admissions are at an all-time low, with a 73.5% decrease in refugee resettlement from the fiscal years of 2016 to 2018. Visa application denials are soaring with a denial rate of 11.3% has been the highest in five [...]

606, 2019

Asking the Right Questions: 7 Crucial Questions to Ask an Immigration Lawyer

By |June 6th, 2019|Categories: General|

Meeting with an immigration attorney is never a fun experience. You wouldn't meet with them in the first place if there wasn't a problem you needed help with. And the stress of that problem can cause you to stop thinking clearly, and you may not know what to say to an immigration lawyer. That means you won't know what questions to ask immigration lawyer office to make sure that the lawyers know [...]

3005, 2019

Social Security Administration Issues More Than 500,000 “No Match” Letters To Employers

By |May 30th, 2019|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, General, Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., immigration reform, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Published May 30, 2019   When a company lists an employee on their payroll, pays payroll taxes and issues them a Form W-2, the federal government is officially notified of that individual's status as a U.S. worker.    For an estimated 8 million workers though, this process is an avenue through which the federal government is UNofficially notified of the employment of undocumented workers.  That is because many of these workers [...]

3005, 2019

Seeking Online Help: Can I Hire An Immigration Lawyer Online?

By |May 30th, 2019|Categories: General|

Immigrating to a new country is nervewracking, and you should try to prepare for the journey before you ever set off on it. To prepare for your new life in the U.S., you should speak to someone who has worked with immigrants and has expertise handling their cases. Before setting off a new adventure — speak to an immigration lawyer. Yet, it can be hard to find an immigration lawyer [...]

1905, 2019

Making U.S. Immigration Great Again

By |May 19th, 2019|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Asylum in the United States, Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Published May 19, 2019   I started practicing immigration law in the decade that followed the Reagan era’s 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act, the last large scale immigration amnesty in the U.S. Through this legislation, roughly 3 million undocumented, but otherwise law abiding, individuals were able to come out of the shadows and officially start their lives as U.S. lawful permanent residents. Eventually, the vast majority eventually went on [...]

1305, 2019

Guide to US Work Visas and Eligibility Requirements

By |May 13th, 2019|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Are you interested in working in the United States? You aren't alone. There are millions of other people that are trying to work in America. If you want to work in the United States, you need a US work visa. Getting a visa can seem intimidating when you're not familiar with the process. But luckily, we're here to help. Keep reading if you want to learn more about the different kind of visas [...]

1005, 2019

A Timeline of Green Card Marriage in 2019

By |May 10th, 2019|Categories: Green Cards|

Every year, couples fall in love and get married. For some couples, that means that one spouse is starting the road towards American citizenship. It's not as simple as just getting a marriage certificate, but the process of becoming a permanent resident (green card holder), and then a U.S. citizen, through marriage is relatively straightforward so long as you follow the steps correctly. Here's what you need to know about [...]

1005, 2019

An Overview of Student Visas in the U.S.

By |May 10th, 2019|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

More than 9 million U.S. visas were issued in 2018. A significant portion of those visas was for nonimmigrant visas, a category of visas that include students. Getting an education is becoming increasingly important in today’s world with so much competition in every market. Knowing how to go about the student visa application process can be both frightening and confusing. However, the process doesn't have to be complicated. that’s why in this article, you’ll find [...]

305, 2019

Determine Which Is Right For You: Spouse Visa or Fiancé Visa

By |May 3rd, 2019|Categories: U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Getting married? Congratulations! But if you're a foreign citizen marrying a U.S. citizen and you want to live in the U.S., planning a wedding won't be the biggest headache you'll encounter. Before you can live in the United States, you'll have to get either a fiancé visa or a spouse visa. But which one is right for you? When choosing the fiancé visa vs. marriage visa, it's important to decide where you want to get married and what your timeline is. It can be a slow process either way. Knowing the ins and outs of each visa will help you decide [...]

205, 2019

Smoking Marijuana May Be Hazardous to Your Immigration Health

By |May 2nd, 2019|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published May 2, 2019     A lawful permanent resident (green card holder) seeking to become a U.S. citizen must fulfill a number of requirements when submitting their Application for Naturalization and in order to be approved to take the oath of U.S. citizenship.   In addition to a requisite number of years of permanent residence and physical presence in the U.S., an applicant for naturalization must demonstrate that he/she is [...]

2204, 2019

Increased Powers to BIA Judges; H-1B Visa Denials Skyrocket

By |April 22nd, 2019|Categories: Asylum in the United States, Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

  Published April 22, 2019 Department of Justice Aiming to Expand Powers of Appellate Immigration Judges The Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) is the appellate body where a party can seek review of an Immigration Judge’s decision in an initial removal (deportation) proceeding.  The agencies overseeing the initial removal proceedings court as well as the appellate court are under the jurisdiction of the Executive Office of Immigration Review, which itself is a sub-agency of the U.S. Department of Justice.    In recent days, it has been reported that the Trump administration is considering implementation of a plan to expand the power of […]

304, 2019

No Dark Courtrooms

By |April 3rd, 2019|Categories: DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), immigration reform, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

  Published April 3, 2019 No Dark Courtrooms is a U.S. Department of Justice/Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) initiative to “reduce and minimize the impact of unused courtrooms and docket time” in the administration of removal proceedings.   The launch date of the initiative is May 1, 2019 and its goal is to allow DOJ/EOIR (the agency overseeing our nation’s removal proceedings) resources to be used more efficiently and to tackle the 850,000+ docket of cases now pending.     To take advantage of new Immigration Judge hiring in the past few years and the abundance of open courtrooms in many jurisdictions, EOIR will be scheduling more […]

304, 2019

U.S. Senate Once Again Proposes Path to Legalization for Dreamers

By |April 3rd, 2019|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

  Published April 3, 2019 The Dream Act of 2019 was recently introduced by U.S. Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Dick Durbin, D-Ill, 2 Senate leaders who introduced the same legislation in years past.   If enacted, the Dream Act would make available a path to lawful permanent residence (green card) to certain longtime residents who arrived in the U.S. as children, completed or are completing high school diploma requirements, worked legally for at least three years or served in the military, pass a background check, and demonstrate proficiency in English and U.S. history.  Applicants will be required to pay a filing fee and […]

2403, 2019

The Top 6 Reasons to Hire An Immigration Lawyer

By |March 24th, 2019|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, General, Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Immigration and PERM / Labor Certification, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

  Published March 24, 2019 Whether the goal is U.S. citizenship via naturalization, lawful permanent residence (green card) or the issuance of a temporary visa – such as a work visa, having an immigration lawyer be a part of the legal process can sometimes be extraordinarily helpful and in other times, absolutely essential.  The job of the immigration lawyer can best be summed up as follows:  A) to keep simple, straightforward cases…..simple and straightforward, B) to devise and implement a thoughtful strategy for cases involving more complex factual or legal issues and C) to provide a client with the type of […]

703, 2019

Scam Alert: DHS Telephone Numbers Used to Extort Money and Obtain Personally Identifiable Information from Unsuspecting Victims

By |March 7th, 2019|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published March 7, 2019 SIn the past week, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued a warning to the public with regard to the use of DHS telephone numbers to reach out and scam an unsuspecting public across the U.S.   The scam, known as “spoofing”, involves a deliberate falsification of information transmitted to a caller ID display to mask the callers true identity. The scammers present themselves as calling on behalf of “U.S. Immigration” or other U.S. government agencies. The scam is carried off with the manipulation of caller ID systems such that the telephone number […]

2002, 2019

Fiscal Year 2020 – H-1B Work Visa Filings to Go Forward Per Usual and Without New Registration Process

By |February 20th, 2019|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

  Published February 20, 2019 April 1 of each calendar year marks the first day anxious employers are eligible to submit H-1B work visa petitions so as to have a chance to employ a qualified foreign worker for the start of the coming, new fiscal year – which starts on October 1.   Some of the workers are already in the U.S., including the many who have just completed their degrees and are already working pursuant to a time limited, general Employment Authorization Document, while others are abroad waiting for a chance to enter and work in the U.S.   The annual available […]

802, 2019

Federal Indictments Handed Down Against Birth Tourism Ring

By |February 8th, 2019|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General, Uncategorized, United States Embassies Abroad|

Published February 8, 2019 With few exceptions, per the Constitution of the United States of America, if a person is born in the U.S., they are born as a U.S. citizen – and no matter the citizenship or immigration status of their parent.  As further evidence of just how valuable a life in the U.S. is, especially with a U.S. passport, we have news of the prosecution of an alleged criminal enterprise specializing in arranging for foreign individuals to enter the U.S. for the sole purpose of giving birth to their children as U.S. citizens.    In recent days, federal authorities have unsealed […]

2401, 2019

Applying for Naturalization – 2 Big Decisionmaking Trends

By |January 24th, 2019|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

  Published January 24, 2019 Applying for U.S. citizenship after accumulating the requisite number of years of permanent residence should not be an automatic decision.   In recent years, U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) seems to be taking a more aggressive approach in deciding applications for naturalization, with increased scrutiny applied to an applicant’s history both before AND after obtaining permanent residence.   That is, to a certain degree immigration officers are looking back at how the applicant obtained their green card status in the first place and engaging in a reassessment of whether that decision was indeed proper. […]

1001, 2019

How Are Immigration Related Services and Offices Impacted By the Government Shutdown?

By |January 10th, 2019|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Foreign Exchange Student Visas to the U.S., Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Immigration and PERM / Labor Certification, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, United States Embassies Abroad|

  Published January 10, 2019 As our nation is headed toward the longest government shutdown in our history, many of the players impacted, including companies petitioning foreign workers as well as individuals in all our immigrant communities, are asking questions about how the shutdown impacts immigration system related processing.  Can I obtain a U.S. passport?    Is my Green Card application interview in the U.S. still going to be conducted?  Can I still apply for a visa at a U.S. consular post abroad?  These and other questions are answered below – and with the answer usually dependent on whether the applicant is […]

1312, 2018

New Registration and Lottery Process Proposed for the Upcoming H-1B Filing Season

By |December 13th, 2018|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published December 13, 2018   Each year, 85,000 new H-1B visas are released for foreign workers and their prospective U.S. employers, including 20,000 visas especially reserved for graduates of advanced degree programs in the U.S. (masters or higher, a.k.a. Masters Cap).   In recent years, during the first week of filing eligibility,  DHS/CIS receives roughly 2 ½ to 3 times the number of petitions as there are available visas.   Toward advancing the goal of giving preference for foreign workers who graduated with an advanced degree from a U.S. educational institution, DHS/CIS is now proposing implementation of a process involving 2 major changes.  […]

1312, 2018

New Guidance Regarding Necessity of I-751 Interviews

By |December 13th, 2018|Categories: Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published December 13, 2018   Foreign nationals married for less than two years at the time they enter the U.S. on their immigrant visas or are approved for adjustment of status to resident status (for those processing in the U.S. ) are generally issued a 2 year, conditional resident status.    To convert their 2 year resident card to a permanent, renewable 10 year green card, the conditional resident is expected to file Form I-751 Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence in the 90 day period leading up to the card’s expiration.  Such a filing typically involves the presentation of proof of […]

2811, 2018

What is a Conviction for Immigration Purposes?

By |November 28th, 2018|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), General, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published November 28, 2018   Foreign nationals who are the subject of a criminal arrest or charges must take proper care to make informed decisions when it comes to consideration of plea deals being offered by the prosecuting entity.    That is because convictions for certain crimes may negatively impact the individual’s immigration status in one way or another.   In addition to which crimes may lead to negative immigration consequences, foreign nationals must also pay attention to whether the plea deal leads to a “conviction” for immigration purposes, and regardless of how the criminal court may label it. Foreign nationals who plead […]

1611, 2018

Widespread Delays Continue to Plague Most Immigration Filings

By |November 16th, 2018|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published November 16, 2018   Applicants for immigration benefits in the U.S. such as lawful permanent residence, citizenship, employment authorization document (EAD), advance parole travel document (AP) and for removal of conditional basis on residence are seeing processing of their filings plagued by extraordinary delays.   Finding a reason for these delays is not easy, since processing costs are funded by applicant filing fees (not taxpayer money) and there has been no substantial change in the processing environment.   Thus the only rational explanation would be that the administration has made a choice to slow down processing, a choice that has caused havoc […]

211, 2018

Trump Looks To End Birthright Citizenship

By |November 2nd, 2018|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Family-Based Immigration Law, General, immigration reform, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published November 2, 2018   The experts have already chimed in to advise that his plan is contrary to basic constitutional law, but that has not stopped Donald Trump from announcing in recent days that he will issue an executive order putting a halt to birthright citizenship, i.e. the rule that all children born in the U.S., with few exceptions, are born as U.S. citizens.   Most see the President’s announcement as a purely political stunt in order to bolster support among his base to vote Republican in the coming midterm elections and to maximize their chances of maintaining control of Congress.  […]

1910, 2018

Medical Exams: New Policy in Effect for Adjustment of Status Applicants

By |October 19th, 2018|Categories: Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published October 19, 2018   With few exceptions, individuals seeking to reside permanently in the U.S. and obtain lawful permanent resident or “green card” status, must document they are not subject to a medical basis of inadmissibility.  Whether the applicant is undergoing the consular processing of their immigrant visa at a U.S. consular post outside the U.S. or is obtaining their residence by way of an I-485 “adjustment of status” application in the U.S., a sealed medical exam report prepared by an accredited physician must be presented in support of their application.   The purpose of the exam is to screen the […]

1910, 2018

Recent Court Challenges to H-1B Visa Policies and Decisionmaking

By |October 19th, 2018|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized|

Published October 19, 2018   Although the U.S. Congress has not changed the substantive law impacting how H-1B work visa petitions are decided, the agency reviewing these petitions – U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services (“DHS/CIS”) – has implemented a variety of internal policies creating numerous novel obstacles to petition approval.   Indeed, DHS/CIS has the authority to implement its own policies however when they go beyond limits allowed by federal law, impacted parties may seek redress in federal court. Our current administration has gone out of its way to implement far ranging policies to make it harder to get […]

410, 2018

This Year’s Green Card Lottery (DV-2020) Begins

By |October 4th, 2018|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), General, Green Cards, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Visa Lottery and Diversity Visas to the U.S.|

Published October 4, 2018   Once again, millions of people from around the world will be vying for a chance to reside in the U.S. by way of an entry into the DV Visa Lottery.   For the upcoming fiscal year the DV-2020 Visa Lottery program makes available 50,000 “diversity” immigrant visas for certain qualified individuals from the vast majority of the world’s countries. Excluded from eligibility are natives of Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born), Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and Vietnam.  Persons born in Hong […]

2009, 2018

Under New Policy, Immigration Applications Can Be Denied More Easily

By |September 20th, 2018|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

Published September 20, 2018   As of September 11, 2018 a new policy went into effect giving immigration officers greater authority to deny immigration related filings without first giving applicants an opportunity to supply the missing evidence.    According to U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services officials, the new policy was prompted by what was seen as widespread documentary shortcomings in applicant filings and the consequent waste of resources forced on immigration officials in order to allow applicants to address these shortcomings, especially when the underlying filing may not ever be approvable.  From the standpoint of the government, instructions […]

1109, 2018

It is Taking Forever for My Green Card or Citizenship Application to Be Decided: What Can I Do?

By |September 11th, 2018|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published September 11, 2018   For foreign nationals in the U.S., two of the most common applications filed with Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services are the I-485 Application for Adjustment of Status (to acquire lawful permanent resident/green card status) and N-400 Application for Naturalization (to acquire U.S. citizenship).  Processing times for both applications these days – from day of filing to interview – ranges from 8-12 months, give or take.   But what happens if your case is pending longer than that?  What measures can be taken to follow up and ensure your case is being decided in a reasonable period […]

2308, 2018

Federal Court in Chicago Allows Pakistani Immigrant’s Involuntary Servitude Claim to Proceed

By |August 23rd, 2018|Categories: Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General, Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published August 23, 2018   A U.S. District Court in Chicago ruled this week, in denying the defendant’s effort at dismissal, that an undocumented Pakistani’s involuntary servitude and forced labor lawsuit against his former employer, a gas station owner, can proceed.    The defendant’s former employer must now formally respond to and defend the lawsuit which alleges the gas station owner essentially enslaved the plaintiff worker, withheld his wages, kept his passport and issued regular threats of deportation. According to the lawsuit, in 2003 the plaintiff/worker, Munawar Ali, was offered employment at the defendant, Sohail Khan’s Illinois gas station, although Ali lacked […]

808, 2018

Trump Administration Looking Into Penalizing Immigrants Receiving Public Benefits

By |August 8th, 2018|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published August 8, 2018   “Public Charge” provisions have been a part of our nation’s immigration laws for more than a century, thus the reason all family based immigration applicants are required to have a financial sponsor who provide an “Affidavit of Support” to guarantee the new immigrant will not become dependent on certain government benefits.   In sum, foreign nationals who are deemed likely to become a “public charge” are “inadmissible” under U.S. immigration law and ineligible for permanent residence (green card).  The Trump Administration is now considering the implementation of new and expansive rules penalizing lawful immigrants who avail of […]

2907, 2018

DHS Looks to Revoke U.S. Citizenship for Those Improperly Approved

By |July 29th, 2018|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), General, Green Cards, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings|

Published July 29, 2018   It is well known that a lawful permanent resident can be subjected to removal proceedings in the event they commit a deportable offense, or were improperly granted their residence in the first place due to some misrepresentation or fraud in their application.     Less well known or common are proceedings to revoke a foreign born individual’s naturalization as a U.S. citizen.   Examples of the rare cases of denaturalization that have gained wider attention over the years are those involving foreign nationals who concealed during U.S. immigration processing their involvement with Nazi war crimes during World War […]

1207, 2018

US CIS Now More Active in Placing Denied Applicants in Removal Proceedings

By |July 12th, 2018|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published July 11, 2018     Under a new policy guidance memo released by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (US CIS) earlier this month, the agency will now be taking a more active role in initiating removal proceedings against denied applicants.     Applicants for permanent residence, naturalization, change of status or other immigration benefits now will be more vulnerable to being placed in removal proceedings if they are deemed ineligible for the benefit sought and are in the U.S. in violation of immigration laws. Pursuant to the new guidance, US CIS is required to issue a Notice to Appear (NTA) – the […]

2906, 2018

Attorney General Sessions: Domestic and Gang Violence Are Not Bases for Asylum

By |June 29th, 2018|Categories: Asylum in the United States, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), immigration reform, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published June 11, 2018    Foreign nationals are eligible to be accorded asylum status in the U.S. if they fear return to their home countries due to:  a) persecution they face on account of their race, religion, political belief or social group AND b) the persecution is carried out by their government or government agents, or groups the government cannot or will not control. In recent days, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, in overturning an Obama administration ruling, issued an order limiting the circumstances under which members of particular “social groups,” including domestic violence victims and some LGBTQ claimants, have a […]

2806, 2018

New Supreme Court Ruling Opens Door to More Options in Fighting Deportation

By |June 28th, 2018|Categories: DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published June 28, 2018   In their recent ruling in Pereira V. Sessions, the U.S. Supreme Court significantly widened opportunities for certain lawful residents AND undocumented individuals to fight their deportation – also known as removal proceedings.   At issue are avenues of relief known as “Cancellation of Removal for Nonpermanent Residents” (undocumented) and “Cancellation of Removal for Lawful Permanent Residents” (green card holders) and the amount of time in the U.S. the foreign national is required to demonstrate in order to qualify for these defenses. For starters, both undocumented individuals as well as green card holders can be placed in removal […]

2905, 2018

New Rules Impacting Immigration Judges and Removal Proceedings

By |May 29th, 2018|Categories: DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, immigration reform, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published May 29, 2018 In recent weeks the Attorney General of the United States, Jeff Sessions, issued a directive limiting the powers of immigration judges to “administratively close” or otherwise delay final decision-making for the cases of individuals facing removal from the U.S. due to their undocumented status.    Instead, as ordered by Sessions, the judges are required, without delay, to issue decisions on all cases, no matter how sympathetic the individual’s circumstances might be or how clean their criminal record is. The most common use of administrative closure involves cases of individuals who are living in the U.S. in violation of our […]

1705, 2018

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By |May 17th, 2018|Categories: General|

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705, 2018

Immigration Services That Seem Too Good To Be True

By |May 7th, 2018|Categories: Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General, Green Cards, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published May 7, 2018 The Office of the Illinois Attorney General recently filed civil lawsuits against 2 women representing themselves as providers of legitimate immigration services but who, according to the complaints, bilked victims out of thousands of dollars.  According to the lawsuits, the women made false promises to unsuspecting undocumented immigrants who thought they were paying for bona fide services that would lead to the legalization of their immigration status. In the first lawsuit, filed in Cook County, Illinois, the Illinois Attorney General charged Elizabeth Olvera, a volunteer and assistant life coach to members of the Chicago area’s Spanish-speaking community, […]

2404, 2018

Supreme Court: “Crime of Violence” Basis to Deport is Too Vague

By |April 24th, 2018|Categories: Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Green Cards, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published April 24, 2018 Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5 to 4 decision struck down a significant portion of a federal statute exposing foreign nationals to deportation on the basis of having committed a “crime of violence”.  The court ruled it incorporates too vague a definition and therefore violates the Due Process clause of the U.S. Constitution’s Fifth Amendment.     The case – Sessions v. Dimaya – involves the reversal of a deportation order against a long time U.S. lawful resident from the Philippines who in 2007 and 2009 was convicted of residential burglary in California. A “crime of violence” basis […]

1004, 2018

In Just 5 Days, the H-1B Visa Cap Is Reached

By |April 10th, 2018|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published April 10, 2018 For the 6th year in a row, during the first week of the filing season U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) received more than enough H-1B visa petitions to exhaust the coming fiscal year’s annual supply of 85,000 visas. By way of the H-1B visa program, U.S. companies have an avenue to recruit and employ foreign professionals and skilled workers in a wide variety of fields and industries, ranging from technology, healthcare, medicine, engineering and business.  Combining a low U.S. unemployment rate, a limited annual supply of visas, and a highly attractive pool of prospective foreign workers, including […]

904, 2018

Massive ICE Raid in Tennessee

By |April 9th, 2018|Categories: DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published April 9, 2018 In the past week, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents executed one of  with filing cabinets, computers and other equipment seized during the operation.   The criminal complaints filed allege that the company schemed to employ large numbers of undocumented workers and underpay federal payroll taxes over a 3 year period in the amount of $2.5 million. Apparently tipped off by the plant’s bank, Citizens Bank, it came to ICE’s attention that large amounts of cash were regularly being withdrawn by company officials and used to pay the wages of plant workers, many of whom allegedly had no lawful immigration […]

2203, 2018

U.S. Supreme Court to Review Mandatory Detention Provisions for Certain Criminal Immigrants

By |March 22nd, 2018|Categories: DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published March 22, 2018 Federal law currently sets forth conditions under which certain non-U.S. citizens with more serious criminal records must be detained without bond while they defend against removal proceedings.  In interpreting this law, two recent federal court of appeals decisions found that only those convicted immigrants apprehended by Department of Homeland Security/ICE immediately after being released from criminal custody may be detained without bond hearings. When not subject to mandatory detention provisions, the non-U.S. citizen with a criminal conviction who is defending against removal may be eligible for release on bond, assuming they are not a flight risk or […]

2103, 2018

Premium Processing Suspended for H-1B Cap Filings Starting April 2, 2018

By |March 21st, 2018|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published March 21, 2018 On April 2, 2018, the filing season begins for the new batch of H-1B visas that become available for fiscal year 2019 – which starts October 1, 2018.   On this date, U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) anticipates receiving 250,000 or so requests for the 85,000 H-1B visas that make up the new yearly supply.     In the past week though, CIS announced that the premium service allowing for expedited review of chosen filings will be suspended through September 10, 2018.   Typically, news of which filings are chosen for consideration becomes public around June, […]

1503, 2018

More DACA Drama

By |March 15th, 2018|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General, immigration reform, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published March 15, 2018 The processing of applications for employment authorization documents for hundreds of thousands of young adults under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, an Obama era executive initiative, was supposed to come to a halt by now.   But thanks to 2 separate, federal court rulings issued in recent weeks, the program has been given new life, albeit with a most uncertain future. DACA was put into action back in 2012, following Congress’ failure to agree on immigration reform legislation, including a law to establish a path to legalization for our nation’s 11 million undocumented individuals.   The […]

2102, 2018

The Bad Lawyer and the Fake Lawyer

By |February 21st, 2018|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), General, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published February 21, 2018   In my 25+ years as an immigration lawyer, I have seen many versions of both the bad lawyer and the fake lawyer.    Each is poisonous in that they erode trust in the legal profession and in humankind in general – not to mention the brazen acts of robbery they commit as they carry out their scams.  In today’s political environment, where those vulnerable to deportation, or just having to access our immigration system, are more fearful than ever, the damage the bad or fake lawyer can do is immense.  Below are two recent examples, with one […]

702, 2018

The Forecast Calls For No Government Shut Down and No DACA

By |February 7th, 2018|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), General, immigration reform, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published February 7, 2018   As of Wednesday afternoon, the stars seem to have lined up for our nation to avert a government shutdown.   It appears a bipartisan consensus has been reached so that funding for our government operations can continue for the next two years.  The new budget features major increases in military and domestic spending, including for disaster relief programs for Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.     So far, the consensus is limited to the U.S. Senate.  However, the House of Representatives is also expected to join on, and if so, there is every reason to believe the President […]

602, 2018

Chicago Based Applicants for Green Cards and Citizenship: DHS/CIS Processing Times

By |February 6th, 2018|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S.|

Published February 6, 2018   Marriage based adjustment of status applicants living in CIS Chicago’s jurisdiction are seeing an approximately 7-8 month wait to be scheduled for an interview.  Applicants for Naturalization (N-400) under CIS Chicago’s jurisdiction are being scheduled within approximately 8-10 months of application filing, and an oath ceremony, for approved cases, usually being scheduled 3 weeks or so following interview. At present the timeline for marriage based I-485 adjustment of status applicants — assuming all applications and supporting documentation are prepared and submitted correctly, is as follows: Dept. of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services receipts are issued within 1 to […]

2301, 2018

Our Budget Impasse and Immigration

By |January 23rd, 2018|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Family-Based Immigration Law, immigration reform, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published January 23, 2018   Our country endured a brief government shut down in recent days, and there is a decent chance for a repeat performance in the coming weeks.    At the core of the debate is our nation’s budget as well as major immigration law issues, including border wall funding, DACA and fundamental changes to our family based immigration system.     The political stakes are enormous, with our nation and elected officials deeply divided on sensitive issues such as who is shielded from deportation and who gets to come to live in the U.S. in the future.   First, we must take […]

901, 2018

The H-1B Visa Rush Is On – Start Preparing Now

By |January 9th, 2018|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Foreign Exchange Student Visas to the U.S., General, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized|

Published January 9, 2018   Starting April 1, 2018, employers and their foreign worker employees will get a chance at one or more of the 85,000 H-1B visas available each fiscal year, with the new fiscal year starting on October 1, 2018.    The time to start preparing is now, as the supply of available visas is usually exhausted almost immediately, and with special attention and planning needed to combat the obstacles the Trump administration’s “Buy American, Hire American” initiative presents. For an employer or a prospective foreign worker to have a chance at one of these H-1B visas, the parties must […]

101, 2018

The Unknown Future of DACA

By |January 1st, 2018|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General, immigration reform, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published January 1, 2018   The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals measure implemented by President Obama has come to represent an issue bigger than just the undocumented young adults it protects and benefits.  Instead, it reflects on who we are as a nation and how we want to treat a population of individuals who arrived in the U.S. as children and through no choice of their own and who now have come to call the U.S. their home, their only home.  With President Trump’s decision to wind down DACA, confusion, panic and fear have set in for the 800,000 young adults […]

1212, 2017

Recent Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Operations

By |December 12th, 2017|Categories: DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published December 12, 2017   Consistent with policies of previous administrations, U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) division has been focusing their enforcement operations arresting noncitizens with criminal convictions, or previous deportation orders. Below are highlights of ICE operations in New Jersey and Michigan as featured in recent DHS press releases: Earlier this month, ICE in New Jersey carried out a 5 day operation and arrested 101 non-U.S. citizens – ranging in age from 20 to 71 years of age – many of whom illegally reentered the U.S. following a previous deportation order, failed to depart pursuant […]

2811, 2017

Update: Green Card Interviews for Marriage Based Applicants, Including for Same Sex Partners

By |November 28th, 2017|Categories: Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Family-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published November 28, 2017     A foreign national applying for permanent resident status by way of marriage to a U.S. citizen, continues to enjoy a mostly efficient and streamlined process, especially if they undergo all steps in the U.S. as an “adjustment of status” applicant.  For most eligible foreign nationals present in the U.S., whether in legal status or not, adjustment of status processing for permanent resident status at their local Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services office (DHS/CIS) is usually preferable to overseas immigrant visa processing at a U.S. consular post.  For various reasons though, not all individuals […]

1511, 2017

Beware Immigrants: Automatic Voter Registration

By |November 15th, 2017|Categories: Citizenship / Naturalization and the N-400 Application, Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, General, Green Cards, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published November 15, 2017   On the topic of well-intended laws and unintended consequences, one of the first things that come to my mind is the law requiring local Department of Motor Vehicle facilities to ask all driver’s license applicants if they would like to register to vote.   In theory, the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, or “motor voter” is a beautiful law  – where prospective voters, many of whom would otherwise not go out of their way to register, are solicited and provided a convenient avenue to register to vote and have a voice in our electoral process.   However, the […]

111, 2017

In the Trump Era, DHS/CIS Looks For More Ways to Deny Work Visa Petitions

By |November 1st, 2017|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Immigration and PERM / Labor Certification, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published November 1, 2017   I am often asked why and how there are so many undocumented people living in the U.S.   The complete answer has many facets.  One of those facets is that our immigration laws make it extraordinarily difficult for ready willing and able workers to fill jobs in need of filling, and even at market wage.    Under the Trump administration, those laws have become even less user friendly for employers and workers, including in the H-1B work visa context. Pursuant to federal statute, H-1B work visas are available for foreign workers to fill U.S. jobs, where 1) the […]

1910, 2017

Trump Administration Looks to Impose Quotas on Immigration Judges

By |October 19th, 2017|Categories: DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, immigration reform, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published Ocotber 19, 2017     Without question, immigration law enforcement in the U.S. has been on the rise since the election of President Trump.  Heightened immigration enforcement was one of the big promises that helped propel Trump into office after successive administrations on both sides of the aisle maintained a fairly consistent immigration enforcement level.  Interestingly, despite all of Trump’s inflammatory accusations directed against him, it was President Obama who, according to Department of Homeland Security statistics, was the most active immigration law enforcer among modern day Presidents. In a controversial move announced last week, the Trump administration is now […]

310, 2017

New Policy: All Employment Based Green Card Applicants In The U.S. Will Be Interviewed

By |October 3rd, 2017|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigration and PERM / Labor Certification, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B|

Published October 3, 2017   Foreign nationals residing in the U.S. who are applying to adjust their status to lawful permanent resident (green card via Form I-485) based on an offer of employment will now, without exception, be required to attend an interview at their local Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services (DHS/CIS) office.  This is a new Trump administration policy aimed at, according to government officials,  heightening the scrutiny of these types of filings, combatting fraud and to ensure only legally qualified applicants are approved.    Employment based green card applicants undergoing the consular processing of their immigrant visas overseas […]

2009, 2017

Premium Processing Continues for More Categories of H-1B Filings

By |September 20th, 2017|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, General, Green Cards, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Visa Lottery and Diversity Visas to the U.S.|

Published September 20, 2017   Premium Processing Continues for More Categories of H-1B Filings In an abrupt about face earlier in the year, U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services (US DHS/CIS) announced it would put a halt to the availability of the fee-based, expedited, 15 day premium processing service for all H-1B work visa petitions.  Slowly but surely though, US DHS/CIS has been reinstituting availability of this service for various types of H-1B petitions, which includes this week’s announcement it would accept premium processing requests for H-1B visa petitions which are now being considered under the fiscal year 2018 […]

609, 2017

The Winding Down of DACA

By |September 6th, 2017|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., General, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, immigration reform, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published September 6, 2017   In 2012 President Obama implemented an Executive Order known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) which led to the issuance of 2 year work permits and a shield against deportation for hundreds of thousands of undocumented young adults brought to the U.S. as children.    President Obama’s action was a direct response to Republican congressional leadership’s refusal to call a vote on a promising bipartisan immigration reform bill that would have put in place a path to legalization for most of our country’s undocumented population.    Now, following up on one of his campaign promises, President Trump […]

2308, 2017

Under Trump, Deportations Up 28%; Immigration Judges Warned On Granting Continuances

By |August 23rd, 2017|Categories: DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published August 22, 2017   According to a recent U.S. Department of Justice report, since the time Donald Trump took office this year, the number of immigrants ordered removed from the U.S. increased 28% compared to numbers from a similar period last year.  From February 1 to July 31, 2017, 49,983 unauthorized immigrants were ordered removed, compared to last year’s number of 39,113. Taking into account the additional 7,086 undocumented immigrants who agreed to voluntarily depart the U.S., the total number of  removal and voluntary departure orders entered this year comes to 57,069. The total number of removal and voluntary departure […]

808, 2017

Who Are The Top Users of H-1B Visas?

By |August 8th, 2017|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published August 8, 2017   The H-1B visa is among the most popular avenues through which U.S. companies employ foreign nationals.  H-1B visa issuance depends primarily on two factors:  1) a U.S. employer offering at market wage a position in a “specialty occupation” –  most often defined as a position that typically requires the worker to have attained a university degree, or equivalent, related to the position at issue and 2) the foreign national having the requisite university degree or equivalent.  In recent years, U.S. employers have filed around 200,000 H-1B visa petitions with U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration […]

2507, 2017

The Top 5 Defenses to Removal Proceedings

By |July 25th, 2017|Categories: Asylum in the United States, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published July 25, 2017   Foreign nationals in the U.S. may find themselves defending against removal proceedings because they overstayed or  somehow violated the terms of their temporary visa status.  Or they may never have had immigration status in the first place.  Or, it might be that they have permanent resident status, but committed a criminal act that prompted their “removability”.    Whatever is the case, if a foreign national finds themselves having to defend against removal proceedings, it is imperative that they know which options may be available to allow them to remain in the U.S.    Below are the most common […]

907, 2017

Certain EAD Holders with Pending Extension Requests Can Continue to Work

By |July 9th, 2017|Categories: Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published July 9, 2017   Foreign nationals in the U.S. can qualify to obtain an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) under a variety of circumstances.   There are more than a couple dozen categories of eligibility, although the vast majority of our nation’s undocumented population do not qualify under any of them.    The most common bases of eligibility for an EAD include foreign nationals with pending applications to adjust their status to permanent residence (pending “I-485” green card application), pending asylum applications, and pending applications for cancellation of removal (for certain undocumented foreign nationals fighting removal proceedings).  Most of the time the Employment […]

2006, 2017

DHS Confirms DACA Still In Effect; Premium Processing for H-1B Petitions May Soon Return

By |June 20th, 2017|Categories: Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published June 20, 2017   Department of Homeland Security Confirms DACA Still in Effect In a recent memorandum to U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) sub-agency heads, DHS Secretary, John Kelly confirmed that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program is still in effect – at least for now – and that applications for initial and extended benefits will continue to be accepted and processed.    This is a significant departure from the campaign promise made by now President Trump who assured his supporters he would be eliminating the program. In general, to be eligible for DACA protection and issuance of […]

606, 2017

When Will CIS Expedite Processing of your Petition or Application? AND New Vetting Procedures in Place for Visa Applicants

By |June 6th, 2017|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Employment-Based Immigration Law, Family-Based Immigration Law, General, Green Cards, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, United States Embassies Abroad|

Published June 6, 2017   These days, with processing times for various petitions and applications getting longer, it is important to be aware that U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) will entertain and grant expedite requests under a variety of circumstances.   Firstly, there are a line of employment based petitions where CIS, for an additional “premium processing” fee, will review the filing and issue a decision in as little as 7-14 days.   The additional fee is $1,225.00, and that amount is on top of base filing fee at issue.   CIS offers this option for the processing of the vast […]

306, 2017

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By |June 3rd, 2017|Categories: General|

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306, 2017

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By |June 3rd, 2017|Categories: General|

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2305, 2017

The Controversy Surrounding Sanctuary Cities

By |May 23rd, 2017|Categories: Amnesty for Immigrants in the U.S., DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), General, Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, immigration reform, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Uncategorized, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published May 23, 2017   Since the election of President Trump, the term “sanctuary city” has had a conspicuous presence in our national conversation on immigration.  President Trump’s executive orders and rhetoric about building a wall and amping up immigration enforcement are the main reasons the topic has become all the more interesting, especially for our nation’s undocumented population.    Firstly, what is a sanctuary city?   It is a local government entity that decided as a matter of policy it will play no role whatsoever when it comes to the enforcement of our federal immigration laws.   That means a sanctuary city’s local […]

2504, 2017

A New Look for Green Cards and Employment Authorization Documents

By |April 25th, 2017|Categories: Conditional Permanent Residence Based on Marriage, Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment Authorization / Work Cards in the U.S., Green Cards, Immigrant Visas for Spouse / Fiancee / Child Visas, Lawful Permanent Residence in the U.S., Uncategorized|

Published April 25, 2017   Toward enhancing security and combatting document fraud, U.S. Department of Homeland Security will begin issuing a newly redesigned Permanent Resident Card (“Green Card”) and Employment Authorization Document (“EAD”) starting May 1, 2017.  Green Cards and EADs issued prior to the release of the new versions will continue to be honored throughout their validity period.    The new documents will feature the individual’s photos on both sides along with unique graphics, color schemes and embedded holographic images.   Green Cards will feature the image of the Statue of Liberty and a mainly green color scheme.  EADs will include […]

2104, 2017

More Than Enough H-1B Petitions Received, But Overall Filings Decline

By |April 21st, 2017|Categories: DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Employment-Based Immigration Law, Immigrant Health Care Workers in the U.S., Non-Immigrant Visas for Temporary Workers / H-1B, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation|

Published April 21, 2017   Within the first week of availability, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services received more than enough petitions to exhaust the entirety of the coming fiscal year’s supply of 85,000 H-1B work visas – which include 65,000 H-1B visas for the general petitioning population and 20,000 reserved for petitions on behalf of workers who received advanced degrees from U.S. institutions.     Specifically, this year 199,000 visa petitions were received the first week of April, and this amount represents a 15.7 percent decrease from the 236,000 requests for the same period last year. Notifications to employers whose H-1B visa […]

1204, 2017

U.S. Department of Justice Announces New Immigration-Related Prosecution Priorities

By |April 12th, 2017|Categories: Customs and Border Patrol / Travel to and from the U.S., DHS / Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), DHS / Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Immigration and Criminal Law / Detainees, Removal / Deportation Proceedings and Court Hearings, U.S. Immigration Law and Legislation, Undocumented Immigrants and Workers in the U.S.|

Published April 12, 2017   In general, individuals who enter the U.S. without proper documentation, or who have overstayed their visas are guilty of only civil, as opposed to criminal, law violations.  That means, the worst penalty such a civil law offend